Less than a week before the start of EICMA 2012, Cycle World has obtained photos and information regarding the Piaggio Group’s four scheduled introductions: the Moto Guzzi California 1400, the Vespa 946, the Aprilia Caponord and a refreshed Aprilia RSV4, in R ABS and Factory ABS forms.
Moto Guzzi California 1400
Judging by this picture alone, the Moto Guzzi California 1400 represents a quantum leap for the great Mandello del Lario make. Solidly rooted in the best tradition of Moto Guzzi, the new California 1400 appears accurately focused on one of the most promising segments of the market in terms of style, quality, execution and level of technological advancement.
The look of the California 1400 draws on the first edition from the early ’70s with its two-tone black and white seat, heavily pinstriped tank and largely black overall appearance. It’s well-equipped, too, with attractive bags, additional highway lights, a windshield, the lot. The engine is a “smart” evolution of the air/oil-cooled 90-degree 1200cc cam-in-head V-Twin, a longitudinal-crank four-valve powerplant enlarged to 1400cc but specifically tuned to deliver the power a high-class cruiser demands: 96 horsepower at 6500 rpm and, most important, 88.5 foot-pounds of torque at only 2700 rpm.
A suite of electronic systems helps the rider extract the best from the new California 1400, and in full safety: selectable throttle by-wire, ABS, traction control, cruise control. Without doubt, the new California 1400 will please die-hard Guzzisti while also fanning the flames of enthusiasm for those new to the brand.
The Vespa 946 goes into production. With its aluminum unibody structure, breathtaking design and superb quality (the best we’ve seen to date), the 946 sets the ultimate standard in scootering, aided by ABS, ASR traction control and a compact and lightweight air-cooled three-valve 125/150cc engine that returns an enviable 130 mpg.
The first picture of the Aprilia Caponord reveals it to be a radical and more highly versatile version of the Dorsoduro, with a more functional and protective fairing, 17-in. wheels front and rear, selectable throttle by wire, ABS and traction control. It also sports a new exhaust system.
Aprilia RSV4 ABS
Aprilia’s RSV4 ABS makes big strides in safety, thanks to a highly evolved anti-lock system in both the R and Factory versions. In addition, the 2013 edition of the World Superbike Champion’s bike now sports an amply revised 65-degree 1000cc V-Four that delivers more power, 184 hp, and much more linear throttle response thanks to evolved integrated injection/ignition management.